Trump Says US, Russia Vow to ‘Move Forward’ After G-20 Meeting

July 9, 2017 Updated: July 9, 2017

President Donald Trump, after meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Germany last week, vowed to “move forward” and form an “impenetrable Cyber Security unit” to prevent election hacking.

On Sunday, July 9, Trump tweeted that he “strongly pressed” Putin “twice” on whether Russia meddled in the U.S. election. Putin, he said, “vehemently denied” those allegations.

The president also said the possibility of the United States lifting sanctions against Russia didn’t come up in the meeting. “Sanctions were not discussed at my meeting with President Putin. Nothing will be done until the Ukrainian & Syrian problems are solved!” he wrote, referring to the Syrian civil war and the Russian occupation of Crimea. 

He noted that the United States and Russia, meanwhile, negotiated a ceasefire in parts of Syria.

“We negotiated a ceasefire in parts of Syria which will save lives. Now it is time to move forward in working constructively with Russia!” he later tweeted. A ceasefire will go into effect in three Syrian provinces: Daraa, Sweida, and Quneitr—although a local activist, Ahmad al-Masalmeh, said that while it remains calm, “there’s still a lot of anxiety,” reported Sunday.

Trump’s tweets came after Putin told reporters in a press conference on Saturday that he believes the American president “was satisfied with my answers” about alleged election interference.

Russian President Vladimir Putin looks on before a meeting at the G-20 summit in Hamburg, Germany July 8, 2017.  REUTERS/Alexander Zemlianichenko/Pool
Russian President Vladimir Putin looks on before a meeting at the G-20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, July 8, 2017. (REUTERS/Alexander Zemlianichenko/Pool)

Putin furthermore said that he told Trump that Russia wasn’t behind the hacking of the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s campaign. There were allegations—pushed hard in major media outlets—that damning emails belonging to the DNC and Clinton chair John Podesta were hacked and given to the anti-secrecy WikiLeaks website. WikiLeaks’s chief Julian Assange has denied those allegations.

“And I think [Trump] noted it and he agreed with it. I think it’s better to ask him,” Putin said, as USA Today reported.

Putin described Trump’s character in person.

“Trump on TV is very different from the Trump in person,” Putin told reporters. “He understands things very quickly. It seems to me that we will be able to base future relations on the kind of meeting we had yesterday.”

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who took part in the two-hour Trump-Putin meeting, said the two parties wanted to move forward to address other pressing matters, namely the Syrian civil war.

“In all candidness, we did not expect an answer other than the one we received,” from the Russian leadership, he said, reported The Associated Press.